Editor’s Note: this post is the first post in a series on how to explosively grow your audience-based business. Hassan had so much to say on the subject that we asked him to write 3 in-depth posts all about how to grow your business!
Do you ever feel like your audience based business isn’t living up to its potential?
Your fingers ache from creating killer content, you’re burnt out from all the networking you’re doing, and your brain is numb from thinking of new ways you can help your audience.
But you still feel as if your business could be better. You feel as if your audience could be bigger, your relationships stronger, and your profits higher…
Yeah, you can work even harder and put more time in, but deep down, you know there’s got be another way, right?
In fact there are 17 simpler ways to grow your business, and you’re going to know all of them once you’re done with this post series.
If you want to blast yourself towards a larger audience, ramp up your number of clients, skyrocket your sales, and inject your business with a euphoric surge of explosive growth, keep reading.
Growing Your Business Means Getting More Leads
Your audience is your main source of leads. No leads means no business.Click To Tweet
And no business is no fun.
So here are the 5 ways to grow your audience that will help you nourish your business with a continual stream of new leads.
Lead Generator #1: Put Your Growth on Steroids with Guest Blogging
When done right, guest blogging can yield amazing returns.
Not only is it the main reason behind Danny Iny’s famous “The Freddy Kruger of Blogging” title (Danny’s guest blogging spree made it seem like he was everywhere on the internet all at once), it’s also responsible for the growth of the Firepole marketing blog from a puny “30 visitors a day – on a really good day” to a blog with a monstrous following of “20,000+ monthly readers.”
It’s also the technique Jon Morrow used to grow his blog Boost Blog Traffic from 0-13,000 subscribers in just 60 days.
Guest blogging offers a range of benefits. It helps you build powerful relationships, improves your SEO, and puts you in front of a larger audience, which can lead to instant sales.
Find 1-3 blogs where your audience hangs out, and read the comments and the popular posts to find what their readers like and what problems they’re facing. Then write guest posts on those blogs that connect the topic readers like with the topics on your blog. You’ll have stronger relationships, and you’ll be exposed to a fresh audience.
Lead Generator #2: Peacock Your Business With Direct Mail
Ever heard of Peacocking? It’s a technique used by pickup artists to describe the wearing of bright, loud, and flashy clothing to grab more attention from women.
You can use the same technique in your audience-based business to stand out from the crowd, by sending out physical mail with eye-catching attachments.
Ash Ambirge (founder of the middle finger project) used this perfectly, and it paid off. Big time.
Ash had trouble securing leads for a company she worked for, so she took an unusually creative approach. She marched over to a roofing supply company and snatched up 30 roofing shingles. Yes, roofing shingles.
She then mailed a roofing shingle to each of the 30 home building companies she wanted to do business with, with the words ” My Company + Your Company = sales through the roof.”
The results of this cunning shenanigan?
An incredible response rate (over 90%) led to deals with almost all of her leads.
Your potential clients get a lot of emails from random organizations, all pleading with them for business. You know what happens to most of those emails, right? They’re marked as junk and deleted.
But sending out physical mail with attachments launches you above the noise. It radiates creativity, confidence and uniqueness, which increase the chances of your voice being heard.
Find 1 unique way to capture the attention of your potential clients. It doesn’t have to be direct mail – just something different that grabs their attention. Mention them in a blog post, do a case study on their business, or review a product of theirs.
Lead Generator #3: Scoop Up Clients with Cold Email
Freelance writer Jake Jorgovan generated over $12,000 in the first 7 months of his freelance career by using cold emails to get clients.
Sending out cold emails might sound a little daunting. But it can be a forceful strategy for scooping up super-high quality leads, because you’re reaching out directly to someone who could use your services and showing them your value.
In his post, Jake says “you can expect to send roughly 100 e-mails to close 1-2 jobs”.
This may sound like a lot at first, but if you spread your email campaign over a month, you only need to send out 25 a week, which is less than 4 emails a day.
Not so scary now, is it?
Here are some fast and furious actions steps to help you hit the ground running with cold emails:
- Compile a list of prospects to email. (Here’s a spreadsheet template made for you.)
- Do some research…understand the pains and wants of your prospect.
- Provide solutions to their problems in your email to show your expertise.
- Have a strong call to action.
- Follow up.
Not sure of what exactly to say in your email? I’ve got you covered.
Here’s a ready-made email pitch template that you can put to work immediately.
Lead Generator #4: Make Friends with Benefits
In his book How to Win Friends and Influence People (a must-read for any business owner), Dale Carnegie tells the story of an owner of a wholesale bakery firm in New York, Henry Duvernoy, and his efforts to sell bread to a certain hotel.
Henry had called the manager every week for 4 years straight. He went to the same social gatherings as the manager. He even took rooms in the hotel to get business.
But he still failed.
Eventually, he changed his approach.
Henry decided to find out what caught the manager’s enthusiasm, what aroused his interest.
He discovered that the manager was the president of a society for hotel executives and that, no matter how far the meetings were, he’d always be there to speak with bubbling enthusiasm about the society.
So the next time Henry met the manager, that’s what he spoke about…
After 4 years of weekly rejection, the manager had a passion-filled half hour conversation with Henry. Before he left the office, the manager had also “sold” him on his society. Meanwhile, not a single word was said about bread.
A few days later… the manager invited Henry to come over with some samples and prices.
When it comes to your audience-based business, developing real relationships lets you skip some of the labour behind growing your business and tap into a ripe audience that’s the same size as your own, (maybe even bigger), with little effort and barely any cost.
Now, we all know how valuable the right relationships can be in an audience-based business, but how do you actually go about making these relationships?
To make sure you’re accepted as a friend and not seen as someone looking for a quick favour, learn from Henry and genuinely connect with people.
Talk about what interests them and become friends before anything.
Can you help them in any way? What do you have in common? What are their passions and interests?
Step 1: Find a business or person who has a strong relationship with a similar audience to yours and connect with them. Talk about their interests, hobbies, goals etc.
Step 2: After you have developed a connection with the person/business, ask them to introduce your non-competitive but related product/service to their audience.
You can then simply return the favour, and everyone leaves the table happy.
Lead Generator #5: Dish Out Value to Create a Loyal, Trusting Audience
There’s a shift in the way people buy things now.
Hard selling and pushy sales tactics are history. Successful business owners of today focus on helping people, giving value, and then generating profits.
Take Danny Iny as an example.
I remember attending his free workshop for the Audience Business Masterclass course. I didn’t know much about him beforehand; I’d read some of his guest posts before the workshop, but that’s about it.
But halfway into the workshop, I was yelling at Danny in the Q&A comments to “shut up and take my money.” (Yes, it was that good!)
The question is…what switched me from being a “warm” prospect, to a “boiling hot” customer, trying to sign up before anyone else to make sure I got a spot in the class?
The answer is simple.
Danny had taught me things that could dunk cash in my pocket, for free.
As a consumer, I felt if his free stuff was this good, imagine how an actual product from him would help me. So I bought the course.
Danny helped me and gave value before asking me to spend a cent, and that built the most important thing when it comes to selling: trust.
Find 1 new way to give value and help your audience before asking them to buy. It can be a workshop, an eBook, a detailed blog post – anything that shows you’re “here to help.”
Your Leads are Waiting: Are You Going to Close Them?
Acting on just one of these strategies above will substantially increase the leads your audience-based business gets.
The next step to explode your growth is to crank up your conversion rates, and I’ll talk about that next week. But right now, I want to hear from you.
Is there anything that makes you want to rip your hair out from frustration when it comes to growing your audience-based business? Or maybe you’re having trouble growing your business? Tell me in the comments below!